Polio case detected in N. Waziristan

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MIRAMSHAH, May 23: A new polio case has been detected in North Waziristan Agency, bringing the number of polio victims this year to three in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas.

Officials said that it was the second polio case in North Waziristan Agency so far this year.

Abu Sohail, three-year-old son of Gul Daraz, a resident of village Haji Shamar Khan in Mirali tehsil of North Waziristan Agency, was tested positive for polio at the National Institute of Health Islamabad on Thursday. They said that the child had received only one dose of the oral polio vaccine before Taliban banned vaccination in the agency last year.

Meanwhile, sources said that a local cleric Mulla Golan in his Friday’s sermon in Mirali told his followers that vaccination was important to safeguard children against the crippling disease. He said that the only way to protect children from polio was OPV and urged Taliban to lift the ban to save children from the disease.

Pakistan has recorded 10 polio cases this year, including three in Fata, four in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, two in Sindh and one in Punjab.

The Fata recorded 20 cases of countrywide 58 cases in 2012. The Taliban’s ban on polio vaccination last year has affected 260,000 children in North and South Waziristan agencies, making those unimmuised children more vulnerable to the childhood disease.

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